id="info"

Software

Office challenge: What's the quickest way to name a range in Excel?

This week, learn how to protect a PowerPoint presentation and share your knowledge on Excel.

Ranges are a powerful feature in Excel. I often wonder how I'd get my work done without them. To name a range, you probably select the appropriate cells and choose Name from the Insert menu. But there's a much easier way — do you know it? Last week we asked… How can you keep others from changing a PowerPoint presentation? Many of you shared how to password-protect a presentation, but Fmfcouto was the first to mention that you can set two passwords, one to open the presentation and a second to modify the presentation. This way, you get a double layer of protection. You can give others permission to open the presentation so they can view it or perhaps even present it, but they can't change anything once it's open without that second password. Protecting the presentation is easy:

  1. From the Tools menu, choose Options and then click the Security tab. In PowerPoint 2007, click the Office button,  choose Save As, and select PowerPoint Presentation. In the resulting Save As dialog box, click the Tools button (at the bottom-left). From the Tools list, choose General Options.
  2. Enter a password to open the file.
  3. Enter a password to modify the file. I recommend that you not use the same password for both opening and modifying the presentation.
  4. Click OK.
  5. PowerPoint will prompt you to re-enter (confirm) both passwords.
  6. Save the presentation.
Anyone who needs to view the file will need that first password to open it. PowerPoint will then prompt the user for the second password. Instruct users to click Read Only instead of entering a second password. PowerPoint won't apply security to every file format. For instance, if you save the presentation as a Web page, PowerPoint will not retain password security. When you try to save the new format, PowerPoint will display a warning — you can save the file in the new format; you just can't password-protect the file. You can also password-protect a presentation you package using the Pack And Go feature as follows:

  1. To initiate the packaging process, choose Package To CD from the File menu. In PowerPoint 2007, click the Office button and choose Publish in the left pane.
  2. When PowerPoint displays the Package For CD dialog box, click the Options button.
  3. Enter the passwords in the Help Protect The PowerPoint Files section.
  4. Click OK and confirm the passwords.
There's a lot more to packaging your presentation, but that's how to secure the package. Thanks to everyone who took part in last week's challenge. What's challenging you this week?

About

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

Editor's Picks